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IAB report quantifies Covid-19 hit to US podcast ad revenues


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Advertising industry body the IAB has published its latest figures on the podcast ads market in the US. “With an expected growth rate of 14.7%, US podcast advertising revenues are nearing the $1bn mark,” it claimed.

Are they really, though? The report doesn’t actually give a figure for its 2020 revenue prediction, but it does for 2019: $708.1m. 14.7% growth on that would mean $812.2m of podcast advertising revenues in 2020. It’s certainly nearer to $1bn than last year, but ‘near’ seems a bit of a stretch.

The report does explain how the IAB has revised its original forecasts for the year though: it expected 29.6% growth for the US podcast ads market this year (which would have taken it to $917.7m) before the Covid-19 pandemic hoved into view, causing many ad campaigns to be put on hold.

The IAB reckons the market will bounce back with 55% growth in 2021 and 36% growth in 2022, which (again, our calculations) would suggest $1.26bn and $1.71bn respectively.

There’s more data in the report about how the market broke down in 2019: for example, music podcasts only snagged 1% of total ad revenues, well behind the leading categories of news (22%), comedy (17%) and society and culture (13%).

Stuart Dredge

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